Social services economic levers in Lithuanian municipalities

Arvydas Guogis

Abstract


The article deals with efficiency and costs diminishing problems of social services organisation and provision in Lithuanian municipalities. The author‘s analysis of social services economic levers is based on many authors research, surveys and social reports. Mainly the author is relying on research and surveys conducted in 2002-2004 by researchers from Mykolas Romeris university, Labour and social research institute and New economics institute in Vilnius. Among the most important is research conducted by Mykolas Romeris university and Association of Local Authorities in Lithuania which was devoted to improvement of social services in Lithuanian municipalities. Drawing the benchmarking among municipalities by counting and evaluating dependency on several efficiency and effectiveness variables in 2002-2003 made it possible to define the best, good and worst working social support centres among Lithuanian municipalities. Among the best were social services centres in Panevėžys and Vilnius cities and provincial Varėna, Akmenė, Molėtai, Radviliškis districts.
The article contains some important methodological definitions and conclusions. Among them there are definitions of economic levers in providing social services and the methodological conclusion considering social support for the marginal groups. It is not yet fully assumed in Lithuania that very different approaches and economic levers have to be devoted to certain marginal groups and mainly active, not passive social policy measures are necessary for the improvement of marginal groups situation in Lithuania. It is necessary to stress that marginal groups require more social support than other societal groups in order to reach certain positive results. In the end of the article the proposals on improving efficiency and costs reduction of social services are recommended to the reader.

Keywords


social services; efficiency; economic levers

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"Social Work" ISSN online 2029-2775 / ISSN print 1648-4789